—W.S. Merwin (1927-2019)
In the cards and at the bend in the road
we never saw you
in the womb and in the crossfire
in the numbers
whatever you had your hand in
which was everything
we were told never to put
our faith in you
to bow to you humbly after all
because in the end there was nothing
else we could do
but not to believe in you
still we might coax you with pebbles
kept warm in the hand
or coins or the relics
of vanished animals
not binding upon you
who make no promises
we might do such things only
not to neglect you
and risk your disfavor
oh you who are never the same
who are secret as the day when it comes
you whom we explain
as often as we can
Now all of my teachers are dead except silence.
Best of luck to you on this Friday the 13th, one of those rare times when the date coincides with a full moon. For 13 more fun facts about Friday the 13th, see www.timeanddate.com/calendar/13-things-friday-13.html/.
Head over to the Blue Lamp on Alhambra Blvd. tonight, 8pm, for hip hop, poetry and soul with Showcase, presenting a variety of groups hosted by Word Wizards. Scroll down to the blue column (under the green column at the right) for info about this and other upcoming poetry events in our area—and note that more may be added at the last minute.
For more about W.S. Merwin, see www.poetryfoundation.org/poets/w-s-merwin/.
—Medusa, celebrating poetry and luck of all kinds…
—Photo by Mark Valentine
Photos in this column can be enlarged by
clicking on them once, then clicking on the x
in the top right corner to come back to Medusa.